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By the book: Fall releases offer 'can't miss' titles

Updated: 3 hours ago

Karin Gillespie | Columnist

September 24, 2021 Fall is an abundance of riches for readers because it’s the season when publishers release their most highly anticipated titles. It’s also the time of year when people ask me, “What book are you most looking forward to?”

Where did Narnia come from? That’s the question posed in the novel “Once Upon a Wardrobe” by Patti Callahan. Megs Devonshire, a logical-minded student on scholarship at Oxford, has a younger brother George who’s dying. After reading “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe,” George begs his sister to approach C.S. Lewis and convince him to reveal the origins of Narnia.

The famous author doesn’t immediately discuss Narnia but instead regales Megs with stories of his early life. When Megs eventually discovers the secret behind Narnia, she finds it captures a hopeful truth that defies her measured and practical way of approaching the world.

Alabama author Callahan first wrote about Lewis in the novel “Becoming Mrs. Lewis” and “Once Upon a Wardrobe” is her second fictional tribute to the author, which casts a charming and engaging spotlight on his childhood. Pre-Order the Book

My choice this autumn is “Apples Never Fall” by Liane Moriarty. Moriarty specializes in domestic suspense, one of the most popular genres in literature, yet she elevates the category with layered characters, spot-on observations and sly humor. Her latest novel is one of her most accomplished, and it centers on the Delaney family whose matriarch, Joy, goes missing.

The main suspect in Joy’s disappearance is Stan, her husband. The grown Delaney children can’t imagine their dad harming their mom, but they are disturbed when they uncover secrets he’s been hiding. By the time all is revealed, the children find themselves re-framing their family history. If you read only one novel this October, you can’t miss with “Apples Never Fall.”